Sometimes scrolling through the scorer report after a basketball game can be as fun as reading a novel. Highlights can tell a sufficiently detailed story about how most games unfolded, but some games are just too weird for a visual medium. In these cases, the simple series of soundtracks gives you all the drama you could want: twists, slow-building story arcs, big ironies, and many of those little details you only notice upon rereading. Our latest entry into the genre comes courtesy of the Las Vegas Aces and Chicago Sky, who both made history when they played last night, and both for good reason! Let’s get together for a story, in four parts:
ACT I: What a way to start! The Aces, with the best starting lineup in the league and a recently versatile bout this season, set the WNBA record for most points in the first quarter and the scoring included a 23-0 run in Las Vegas. “That first quarter was one of the brightest quarters I’ve ever seen in basketball. In a quarter of 10 minutes, we have accumulated 41 points, “said Aces manager Becky Hammon after the game, certainly in high spirits after her team maintained what looks like an insurmountable lead. Jackie Young, a star emerging in Las Vegas, he led his team into scoring, which became more common this year as he added a consistent three-pointer to his game. Chicago, their starting lineup a total mess in the plus-minus columns and turnover, he wasn’t even doing that badly. A few tips for Sky: don’t let the other team shoot 63 percent better than three out of 11 attempts.
ACT II: Hmm. Things got better for Sky, but first they got worse. You will notice the report The biggest advantage the statistic in the second quarter scored up to 28 points for the Aces. He will likely be lost due to the impending loss of Sky, but Courtney Vandersloot is playing pretty well. Anyway, who can blame Vegas for taking their foot off the gas a bit? Their lead is now only 11 points and perhaps it is not great that three out of five starters have gone goalless, but they are still shooting well as a team, so it doesn’t seem like much to worry about. They will be fine.
ACT III: My God! Not a Lead modifications: 1! In the third quarter, the Aces scored 11 points against Sky’s 30, and it’s a bit of a miracle that they did; seven of the 11 came from the free throw line. (Oddly, Sky has yet to attempt a free throw in this match.) Now after a disastrous one 15.4 percent quarter shot, are the Aces that have become turnover and plus-minus clowns. But this is the same team that once scored 41 points in a quarter. They did it like half an hour ago! They certainly have the job of regaining the edge and showing Chicago who’s boss!
ACT IV: No, they do not. They don’t have it. The Sky saw the Aces’ scoring record and raised them “record for the biggest comeback in WNBA history”, ultimately winning this 104-95. They did so with six free throws made, all in the fourth quarter, and zero offensive rebounds. Vandersloot, once again Sky’s savior, finished with 25 points and eight assists. Charming victory.
Here’s Becky Hammon’s full post-match quote: “That first quarter was one of the brightest quarters I’ve ever seen in basketball. In a quarter of 10 minutes we have accumulated 41 points. And then practically afterwards they kicked our asses.